YAMAHA REVEALS OFF-ROAD TEAM LINE-UP FOR 2022
When a race team is made up of a very experienced three-time AORC winner as team manager, along with a four-rider line-up that combines cool-headed experience with youthful exuberance, it’s well placed to be a threat for the most coveted off-road trophies on offer in Oz – namely, the Australian Off-Road Championship, the Australian 4-Day Enduro and the Hattah Desert Race.
Well, that’s an apt description for the ShopYamaha Off-Road Racing team in 2022, who has been a perennial frontrunner in the national off-road scene for a decade now. But will Yamaha be able to claim its first AORC Outright title since 2013, when Daniel Milner won it on a YZ250F? They sure plan on giving it a red-hot crack!
Here’s this week’s PR from Yamaha HQ about the ShopYamaha’s Off-Road Racing team’s four-rider assault on the 2022 season…
When others back it down a notch, the ShopYamaha Off-Road Racing team have kicked another gear and held the throttle wide open by unleashing a massive four-rider line-up for the 2022 off-road racing season.
Josh Green, Michael Driscoll, Kyron Bacon and Blake Hollis will form the ShopYamaha Off-Road Racing team for 2022, again showcasing Yamaha’s dedication to off-road racing in Australia and their high-performance products.
The four-rider team will again be under the guidance of former AORC champ, AJ Roberts, and have two Yamaha trucks on site at each of the Australian Off-Road Championships, the Australian 4-Day Enduro and the Hattah Desert Race.
“Yamaha will continue to have a huge presence in off-road racing for 2022 and our consistent investment is another form of Yamaha’s passion not just for racing, but also product development and the Australian market,” explained Roberts. “From contesting these events, we constantly give feedback to Japan and as a result, the quality of the production bike improves. The WR250F and WR450F are better than they have ever been, and racing plays a huge part of that.
“Having a four-rider team will make it an extremely busy year, but that’s what we love doing. I feel we have great opportunities with our riders in both E1 and E2 as all four are determined to have a successful season.
“We are also looking forward to getting a normal season back underway. The last two years have been tough with limited national events, but for 2022 we are looking at a full calendar with AORC, A4DE and Hattah and I know everyone can’t wait to get stuck into it and get back to racing,” AJ Roberts went on to say.
Green and Driscoll will spearhead the charge in the E2 (450cc) category for 2022. Green, the veteran of over 10 years of professional off-road racing, shows no signs of slowing down and his passion for racing is as strong as ever.
Michael Driscoll continues to improve and now sees himself as a legitimate outright contender at every round. He now has the strength and experience to muscle the powerful 450cc machine around and is set on a successful 2022 season where he breaks through for major success.
In the E1 (250cc) division, the Yamaha flag will be in the hands of Kyron Bacon and Blake Hollis. Bacon, based in Tasmania, has been the man turning heads as he impresses at every outing. With an aggressive riding style and bulldog determination, Bacon will be a leading contender in the E1 championship in 2022.
Blake Hollis makes the step up from the EJ class and ready to make his mark in professional racing. Hollis moved to Queensland during 2021 to be closer to the team base and work on his riding. He went back to his motocross roots recently to pick up his intensity and now has his sights set on 2022.
“Yamaha continue to expand our on-line presence and our association with the Yamaha off-road team gives us a direct line to our customer base,” explains Tara-Lea Albury of Yamaha’s Parts and Accessories Division.
“We saw in increase in traffic in 2021 through ShopYamaha and that tied in well with our first year with the team. ShopYamaha is now a one-stop online retail space that allows you to view thousands of accessories and Yamalube products for your Yamaha and it will continue to grow as we invest more in the future. We look forward to another strong season with AJ and his team with some fun promotions and activations to be rolled out during the year,” Albury ends.